When most of us have computer security woes, we just get Norton Antivirus - but in California, some tech users have found a more bewitching solution.
Reverend Joey Talley is a Wiccan witch who usually lends her services to Tarot readings, guidance, and Wicca workshops, but she's also being taken on by clients who need tech support. She claims she can use her witchcraft to essentially harness the energies surrounding broken gadgets to fix them - whether it's a faulty burglar alarm or an infected PC.
Talking about a time she cleared out a virus, she said: "I got contacted by a small business owner in Marin county. She had a couple of different viruses and she called me in. First, I cast a circle and called in earth, air, fire and water, and then I called in Mercury, the messenger and communicator. Then I went into a trance state, and all I was doing was feeling. I literally feel the virus in my body. I can feel the smoothness where the energy's running, and then I feel a snag. That's where the virus got in.
"Then I performed a banishing ceremony. I used a black bowl with a magnet and water to draw the virus out. Then I saged the whole computer to chase the negativity back into the bowl, and then I flushed that down the toilet. After this I did a purification ceremony. Then I made a protection spell out of chloride, amethyst, and jet. I left these on the computer at the base where she works.
"It cleared out immediately. They usually do."
Reverend Talley describes viruses as entities, akin to what we may think of as demons, ghosts, or angels, that feed on the electromagnetic energy that computers exude. It's just a case of banishing them from the computer the same way you'd banish roaches from a kitchen, she says.
Do her methods work? Well, placing stones and sage around your computer can't hurt, but we'd recommend installing Kaspersky all the same.